- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 14, 2003

CARACAS, Venezuela Divided by a crippling strike, this country is engaged in an uncivil war of words between supporters of President Hugo Chavez and those who want to force him from office, creating a protest-specific vocabulary.
The following are some of the expressions that have been heard regularly since the strike began Dec. 2:
Chavistas: Supporters of Mr. Chavez
Squalid: Term used to describe opponents of Mr. Chavez, who once called his foes "a squalid minority." Opposition T-shirts proudly state: "Squalid for Venezuela."
Talibans: Used by either side to describe hard-liners in the opposite camp.
Dictator, murderer, terrorist: This is how strike leader Carlos Ortega describes the president.
Putschists, fascists, oligarchs: Mr. Chavez's description of Mr. Ortega and other strike leaders.
Bolivarian: A term Mr. Chavez uses frequently and adds to the formal name of the country. It refers to the intellectual legacy of Simon Bolivar, the 19th-century South American liberator from Spain, whom Mr. Chavez claims as his inspiration.
Circles of terror: The opposition's term for Chavista groups called "Bolivarian Circles."
National democratic cacerolazo: The opposition's description of daily pot- (or "cacerol"-)banging protests.
National active strike: The work stoppage as described by the opposition.
Discovery Chavez: Opposition nickname for state television.
Coupvision: Chavista nickname for private, anti-Chavez TV.
Democratic kit: Whistle, national flag, sneakers, jeans, shirt in the national colors and a bottle of water essential gear for anti-Chavez demonstrations.
"He's going, he's going.": Opposition slogan.
"He's going he's going to stay.": Chavista slogan.
"Chavez is driving them mad.": Chavista song and slogan.
"The madman has little time left.": Opposition slogan.
Scab: Opposition term for Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva after he sent a boatload of fuel to Venezuela.
Liars: Term used by media on both sides to describe each other. Also shouted at foreign reporters during opposition marches.
"Free the bear": Refers to the bear that adorns bottles of Polar, the local beer that is unavailable as a result of the strike.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide